Omari Knox is a 28 year old 188cm guard from Brooklyn, New York that is recently finished his fifth professional season first with the Rhein Stars Koeln (Germany-Regionalliga) where he played 15 games averaging 13.3ppg, 4.4rpg, 2.5apg, 2.1spg, FGP: 41.7%, 3PT: 34.7%, FT: 80.6%. He started his basketball career with Bloomfield (NCAA2). In 2009, he started his basketball career in Germany with TSV Dachau Spurs (Germany-Regionalliga) where he played until 2014 playing a total of 99 games and last season played 24 games: 27.5ppg, 9.5rpg, 4.2apg, 2.6spg, FGP: 52.0%, 3Pts: 34.7%, FT: 81.0%. In the last three seasons he averaged 26ppg. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
Omari thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been?
Hey Miles, It’s always a pleasure. I am currently in New Jersey. My summer has been pretty cool.
It is almost mid August and you are still looking for a team. Are you slowly getting nervous?
Yes, I definitely get a bit nervous whenever August comes around and I have not found a team. I have not had consistent representation throughout my career so I always tend to worry.
How has the team search been going this season in comparison to other years. You played four years with German Regionaliga team TSV Dachau Spurs that always kept you, but last season you made jump to aspiring RheinStars Cologne. Why has it been so difficult this summer to find a team?
The team search has been pretty difficult this season, since I am without an agent to represent me. In the past years I always had the option to return to Dachau but explored other options at the end of the season. This summer I haven’t had representation. Many teams, as I have discovered had assumed that I would be signed already or would have returned to Cologne so they did not bother to reach out to me.
Your in the best basketball age at age 28. Does it feel like there are many guards around in the world like leaves on a tree?
I feel that I’m in great shape at age 28. I think that there are just so many guards around the world like leaves on a tree.
How confident are you that you will still find a team and who has been supporting you most this summer with keeping your head up?
Even though it is pretty late in the signing process, I feel confident that someone is going to sign me for this season. I have been getting help and support from friends Moritz Korff and Fabian aka “Faboom”. They both try to keep my name out there in the market and let me know which teams are looking for players.
Last season you played for the Rhein Stars Koeln (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 15 games averaging 13.3ppg, 4.4rpg, 2.5apg, 2.1spg, FGP: 41.7%, 3PT: 34.7%, FT: 80.6%. With all circumstances how happy were you with your own performance in those 15 games?
I know that I could have played much better but it took some time for me to figure out exactly what my role would be for the team. I was coming from a team where I was asked to carry the bulk of the scoring load, to a team where I was surrounded by several talented and experienced players. It was not a problem for me that I wasn’t scoring huge numbers, as long as we were winning games.
Your season seemed to end in January when the club got American David Downs. Was there ever an explanation why they had to get him and you had to suffer not playing anymore?
We had some injuries within the team and the club needed to find possible replacements. When we were unable to find an EU or German guard, the club had to bring in another U.S. guard.
After being a star in the Regionaliga you suddenly didn´t play any more games, just practiced, got paid and watch games. How tough was this for your ego and how did you cope?
I admit this was a tough situation to be in, but (like I do with anything else) I made the best of it, and stayed professional. I enjoyed practice so I still was able to get plenty out of it, and stay in shape in case I decided to change teams. I also was able to play in the Pokal games with David which I enjoyed.
You have no bad words for the RheinStars Cologne. Despite not playing the second half of the season how would you describe the overall experience playing with future Beko BBL team RheinStars?
The overall experience with the Rheinstars was a success. Things did not go completely as planned, but in the end my job was to come in and help the team to win a championship and that goal was accomplished.
What did you learn in this season that you feel will help you as a player in the future?
Playing for Coach Mario and JJ Strasser, I have learned plenty! Playing in Europe the first few years, I was able to add more to things to my game, as well as gaining experience. However, I think that if I had landed a Pro A job immediately after playing in Dachau, it may not have worked out because there were so many important concepts that I had no idea about until playing this season. I enjoyed this season, regardless of how things ended and I will definitely be ready for whatever opportunity comes next.
If you could describe yourself in a few sentences as to why you could help any team now how would you do it?
I would describe myself as a multi-talented player with a team-first attitude. I am able to contribute to the team in many ways such as (scoring, defending, rebounding from the guard position, and distributing) My past numbers show that I can carry a team if necessary, but I’m also willing to do whatever it takes to win.
How does a normal summer work out day look like for you in the summer of 2015?
I run a mile in the morning (early before mid-day and it gets really hot). In the afternoon I go to the gym to work out. I lift weights first, and then get on the court to do some cone drills and get a lot of shots up.
What is the current state of Lebron James? Will he ever be mentioned in the same breath as a Michael Jordan?
Lebron James is a great player! The league has never seen anything like him before. However, he won’t be mentioned in the same breath as Michael Jordan.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Thanks Omari for the chat.